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tv   U.S. House of Representatives  CSPAN  December 2, 2009 1:00pm-5:00pm EST

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the speaker pro tempore: the nays are zero. . the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the -- the yeas are being 417. the nays are zero. the 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the resolution is agreed to, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. . resolution is aeed to, without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. without objection, the title amended. the unfinished business is the vote on the motion of the gentleman from new york, mr. bishop to suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 897 on which the yeas and nays were ordered this eclerk will report the title of the resolution. the clerk: house resolution 897, recognizing the importance of teaching elementary and secondary school students about the sacrifices veterans have made throughout the history of
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the nation. the speaker pro tempore: the question is, will the house suspend the rules and agree to the resolution. members will record their votes by electronic device. this will be a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote, the yeas are 419, the nays are zero. 2/3 being nate firmtive, the rules are suspended, the resolution is agreed to, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. the unfinished business is the question of suspending the rules and passing h r. 3634, which the clerk will report by
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title. the clerk: h.r. 3634, a bill to designate the facility of the postal service located at 109 main street in clifton, arkansas, as the george kell post office. the speaker pro tempore: the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. >> mr. speaker. on that i ask for a recorded vote. the speaker pro tempore: a recorded vote is requested. those favoring a recorded vote will rise. a sufficient number having risen a recorded vote is ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. this will be a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to have my name removed from h.res. 648. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, the chair will postpone further proceedings today on motions to suspend the rules on which a recorded vote or the yeas and nays are ordered, or on which the vote inoccurs objection under clause 6 -- incurs objection under clause 6 of rule 20. record votes on postponed questions will be taken later.
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for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? >> mr. speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 3980 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 3980, a bill to provide for identifying and eliminating redundant reporting requirements and developing meaningful performance metrics for homeland security preparedness grants, and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from texas, mr. cuellar, and the gentleman from alabama, mr. rogers, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. cuellar: mr. speaker, i ask for unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and insert extraneous materials in the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. cuellar: mr. speaker, i also ask unanimous consent that the exchange of letters between the committees of homeland security and the transportation and infrastructure committee be
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included in the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. cuellar: mr. speaker, i rise in support of this bill and yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. cuellar: thank you, mr. speaker. congress instructed fema and in the implementation of the 9/11 commission act of 2007 to develop performance measures for its homeland security grants program. as the committee of homeland security, the subcommittee -- the hearing we had on the emergency communications, these requirements remain poorly implemented and difficult to comprehend. what is most disconcerting is that fema cannot determine our nation's overall preparedness on how our homeland security grants have helped to protect our nations from acts of terrorism. it is for this reason that i come to you today to ask for
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your support of h.r. 3980, the redundancy elimination and enhanced performance for preparedness grants act. this would require fema to work in conjunction with states, local, tribal and territorial stake holders to do the following things. one, streamline homeland security grant reporting requirements, rules and regulations to eliminate redundant reporting. two, create a strategy, including a timetable for establishing the much-needed performance standards for grant programs to ensure that funds are being directed to the areas where they are -- should be best spent. and three, that they require fema to take an inventory of each of the homeland security grant programs to include the purpose, objective and performance goals for each. the plan would be submitted to the appropriate congressional committee no later than 120 days after the bill's
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enactment. it will be updated biannually to ensure that the committee will maintain a watchful eye, the oversight on redundancy in the law that might confuse the grant recipients at the local level. this bill will help identify inefficiencies with the d.h.s. grant program and it will increase the quality. i urge all of my colleagues to support this important legislation, and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from alabama. mr. rogers: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. rogers: mr. speaker, i rise today in strong support of h.r. 3980, sponsored by my good friend from texas, mr. cuellar, who i'm pleased to serve on the subcommittee with. since 2006, congress has mandated fema to measure the nation's level of preparedness as well as the effectiveness of state and local homeland security grant programs administered by fema.
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both post-katrina reform act of 2006 and the 9/11 act of 2007 require fema to develop metrics with homeland security resources. these include the comprehensive assessment system, the target capabilities list and the state preparedness report. unfortunately, these measures have not been properly integrated by fema resulting in duplicative resulting requirements that put an undue burden on state and local departments. they can be strengthened and improved with input from stakeholders and the establishment of sound performance metrics. this bill seeks to improve the way grant programs are administered and managed by fema and will ensure that congress is informed of the ongoing planning at fema for improving measures of preparedness and eliminating duplicative requirements placed on the grants. i urge my colleagues to support the measure, and i reserve the
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balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from texas. mr. cuellar: mr. speaker, i have no more speakers. does the gentleman from alabama -- if the gentleman from alabama has no more speakers, i am prepared to close after the gentleman closes. mr. rogers: i have no more speakers. all i would do is urge the members to support this. it's a good bill. i yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from texas. mr. cuellar: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. cuellar: as you heard, this is a commonsense legislation that would enhance our nation's preparedness and response capacity. all we're trying to do is make sure we get rid of any regulations that cost our local -- cause our local folks problems. number two, we need to make sure that -- if we are going to spend billions of dollars on grants, we just got to make sure that we measure those particular results. and the bottom line, mr. speaker, we're trying to focus on the customer and the customer are the folks that -- the recipients of this grant.
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i certainly want to thank our ranking member, mr. rogers. he's done an outstanding job in the committee and i look forward to working with him, not only on this legislation, to make it a law, but certainly in other pieces of legislation. i urge all my colleagues to vote aye and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. all time has expired. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 3980 as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion -- mr. cuellar: mr. speaker, i request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, the yande.
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-- the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20 and the chair's prior announcement, further proceedings on this motion will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from -- the gentlewoman from texas rise? ms. jackson lee: i have a bill, h.res. 28, and ask unanimous consent to move the house to suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 28 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the resolution. the clerk: house calendar number 135, house resolution 28, resolution expressing the sense of the house of representatives that the transportation security administration should, in accordance with the congressional mandate provided for in the implementing recommendations of the 9/11 commission act of 2007, enhance security against terrorist attack and other security threats to our nation's rail and mass transit lines. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentlewoman from texas, ms. jackson lee, and the gentleman from alabama, mr. rogers, will
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each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from texas. ms. jackson lee: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and insert extraneous material on the resolution under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. ms. jackson lee: mr. speaker, i rise in support of this resolution and yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. jackson lee: i thank you. mr. speaker, house resolution 28 expresses the sense of the house of representatives that t.s.a. should increase and enhance its efforts to secure rail and mass transit systems in ways that are consistent with the 9/11 act and h.r. 2200. let me first of all say, mr. speaker, that in addition to this legislation, as we sat on the floor today and watched the actions in afghanistan and pakistan, as we see the world changing from mumbai to madrid, we recognize the crucialness of
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national security and homeland security. and so this legislation is to emphasize the importance of expanding our oversight and response to the idea of mass transit and rail transportation. i introduced this resolution because deadlines on the 9/11 act have passed without being set aside which is inexcusable given the risks faced by our nation's rail and mass transit system. i offered h.r. 2200 which included several elements that sought to enhance the surface transportation efforts. that bill passed in an overwhelmingly bipartisan manner earlier this year. as we wait for our friends in the senate to act on h.r. 2200, i believe that the house agreed to this resolution recommits our goal of t.s.a. securing these modes of transportation. let me first of all acknowledge the professional men and women that work for the transportation security administration. i am gratified to know that progress is being made of a new
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administrator for that agency and -- but they need tools and they need the tools that will allow us to focus on the security of these important elements of transportation and as well the job engine of our community and our nation. many americans use mass transit. many americans use rail. any irreversible tragic terrorist act can impact the economy of this nation. as we are reminded by the tragic events in russia over the weekend and in other cities over the world in the last several years, rail and mass transit systems are prime targets for terrorist attacks. when they are shut down the economy can shut down. this resolution recognizes t.s.a. as being uniquely positioned to lead our nation's rail and mass transit system and recognizes the k-9 team program as a valuable resource which my friend from alabama has worked on. i might also say that this
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effort today, this resolution is also to save lives. as such, it is critical that t.s.a. security efforts share our commitment to securing these systems. i urge my colleagues to join me in supporting this resolution and send a message about the importance of protecting our people, our infrastructure and our economy. and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady reserves. the gentleman from alabama. mr. rogers: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. rogers: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today in support of h.res. 28 sponsored by my friend and the gentlelady from texas, ms. jackson lee. we know the nation's surface transportation system is designed for accessibility and efficiency making them vulnerable to terrorist attacks. when -- we must construct and finance a system of deterrence, protection and response that effectively reduces the possibility and consequences of another terrorist attack without unduly interfering with travel, commerce and civil liberties.
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and the 9/11 act of 2007, congress mandated the d.h.s. take certain steps to ensure the security of our nation's public transportation systems. more than two years later, a number of mandates have gone unmet by the department and this resolution expresses the sense of the congress that d.h.s. should actually implement those mandates. it is time for d.h.s. to move beyond the transportation sector's specific plans that identify and evaluate risks and emphasize risk reduction measures. this resolution resolves that t.s.a. should continue to enhance the security of mass transit and rail transportation systems, continue to development -- continue the development of the k-9 explosive development program. the resolution also takes special note that more attention is needed for school transportation systems. i urge my colleagues to support the measure, and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentlelady from texas. ms. jackson lee: mr. speaker, i'd like to inquire of the
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manager on the republican side if he has any additional speakers because i'm prepared to close. mr. rogers: no, ma'am. i have no additional speakers and will yield my time to you. i would urge members to vote for this and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentlelady from texas. ms. jackson lee: mr. speaker, let me first of all yield myself such time as i may consume. i'd like to thank the staff of the homeland security committee and as well the staff director of the transportation and security committee, mike beland, and acknowledge the chairman of the committee for working with me and acknowledging the importance of this particular amendment and this bill. let me just say as i close we have already enuciated the parameters of securing mass rail and rail. we understand that we are
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behind in that effort. i know there are committed, dedicated members of the homeland security department in efforts that are all ready to go. even over the last couple of days as we look at actions that may be at first glance to be perceived to be innocent, individuals intruding into the parameters of the white house, we know that we have to be on alert because no action should be taken in a simple or a, if you will, nonserious manner. so i stand today to say that this legislation, though a resolution, is serious because it emphasizes the commitment for tools and saving lives. and i'm delighted that my colleagues on the committee in a bipartisan manner has supported this. i'd like to acknowledge the ranking member of this committee, mr. dent, and i've asked my colleagues to support
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this legislation, mr. speaker, and i believe this is a critical issue, h.res. 28 addresses a critical issue of surface transportation and i encourage my colleagues to vote aye. with that, mr. speaker, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady has yielded back. the question is, will the house suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 28. as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended and the resolution is agreed to and -- ms. jackson lee: on that, i request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having risen, the yeas and nays are ordered. under clause 8 of rule 20 and the chair's prior announcement,
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further proceedings on this measure will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from texas rise? ms. jackson lee: i move that the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 3963. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar number 198, h.r. 3963, a bill to provide specialized training to federal air marshals. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentlewoman from texas, ms. jackson lee and the gentleman from california, mr. lungren, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from texas. ms. jackson lee: pursuant -- mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and insert extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. ms. jackson lee: mr. speaker, i rise in support of this bill and yield myself such time as i might consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. jackson lee: i'm grateful to the gentleman from
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california, mr. lungren who has worked tirelessly on this issue. this legislation will help to bolster the effectiveness and morale of the federal air marshal servicemark of whom i visited with over my tenure as a member of the homeland security committee. as my -- in my position as chairwoman of the subcommittee on infrastructure protection, i have worked to keep our modes of transportation secure and ensure that departments of the -- that members of the department of homeland security are treated fairly and given the opportunity to exercise their concern and have this congress and this executive listen to their concern this bill works toward both of these important objectives. the air mashal service has quickly expanded its size and efforts in the wake of the attacks of september 11, 2001, and this bill helps restore important training measures in a way that is consistent with that necessary expansion. in addition this legislation will provide for potential promotion opportunities.
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i would like to note that the this -- that this provision was offered in the markup of the t.s. a authorization bill i offered earlier this year and passed the house in a bipartisan matter. -- manner. at that time, i didn't feel it contained the necessary language to ensure it wouldn't negatively impact the salaries of federal air marshals. we were able to agree on language that eliminated my concerns. i thank the gentleman for his cooperation and collaboration for an important step forward. as a consequence, i'm convinced that federal air marshals cannot and will not be wrongly classified as criminal investigators. this bill is important to the safety of the traveling public. i look forward to bipartisan passage of h.r. 3963 and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady reserves. the gentleman from california. mr. lungren: i yield myself
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such time as may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. lungren: thank you very much and i thank the gentlelady for her gracious comments and her support of this bill. i rise in support of h.r. 3963, the federal air marshal criminal investigative training restoration act a bill i have authored. prior to 9/11, the criminal investigative training program at the federal law enforcement training center was an essential part of the training we have for our federal air marshals, commonly referred to as f asks ms. the events of 9/11, however, necessitated an emergency situation in which we were required to rapidly hire, train, and deploy thousands of new fama. -- fams. in order to meet this mandate, the newly hired members of the
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corps, without federal experience, were not required to take the criminal investigative training program. it was not because we did not wish them to have it, but that would have delayed their deployment. we were under an emergency situation. we realize that additional federal air marshals were essential to the overall response to the threat we then knew to be real. it has always been the intent of the federal air marshal service, however to resume using the criminal investigative training program as part of the basic training for fams. this will restore that as part of the basic training for the members of this organization. crucial to the mission of the federal air marshals is the ability to detect, deter, and prevent terrorist or other criminal hostile acts targeting our u.s. air carriers, air
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force, passenger, crew, or other transportation modes. currently, the fams are required to take a mixed basic police training program and a fams-specific course at the federal law enforcement training center. restoring the criminal investigative training will provide the fams with the specific knowledge and skills to respond to situations on the ground as well as respond in night. the additional training, it is 12 weeks long, includes law enforcement interview, interrogation, and behavioral assessment skills and techniques. it will undoubtedly provide the air marshals with law enforcement skills not only to fly missions but to perform enhanced roles with our visual intermodal protection and response, our vipr, team.
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detection is the principal tool utilized to disrupt potential terrorist operation. these investigative techniques are not currently taught to our federal air marshals. it also provides the department of homeland security secretary and the t.s.a. administrator a highly trained, agile, motivated task force capable of meeting the security challenges facing not only our transportation sector but also the homeland itself. now, mr. speaker, our federal air marshals expressed a strong desire for advancement opportunities within the service and the opportunity gain greater investigative experience. this legislation affords these opportunities and is an important step in improving operation at the federal air martial service. restore -- air marshal service. it will also improve morale
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tremendously. these are trained individuals who seek to be recognized as essential members of our overall law enforcement community. this will give them the kind of training that will assist them, not only in their george but should they pursue other lines of employment in the world of law enforcement, this will provide them with a background which will assist them. the federal air marshal service promotes the offering of this training to their membership. the federal law eners foment officers association also supports it this bill does not in any way reclassify federal air marshals as federal investigators. the bill before us states expressly that nothing in the bill would be construed as reclassifying fams as criminal investigators and that should
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clear up any question of a budgetary nature with respect to this bill. i would ask for the house bipartisan support of this legislation and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves this the gentlelady from texas. ms. jackson lee: i have no further speakers. i inquire whether the gentleman is prepared to close. mr. lungren: i'm prepared to close. as i said, i thank the gentlelady for her support on this i thank both sides of the aisle, both staff and members of the committee. this is a common sense approach, the kind of thing that we ought to be working on together. we have worked on together here. i hope it will pass unanimously. with that, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentlelady from texas. ms. jackson lee: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. jackson lee: i thank mr. lungren for his cooperation in this effort. i want to emphasize a point he has made that should be
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re-emphasized. we are gratified we have federal u.s. air marshals and thank them for their service. they are peace officer, as we use that terminology in texas. they are law enforcement officers. we're gratified for that expertise this legislation will help them add to their portfolio in training on investigation. there's not a single action that would require their service that does not require us to have the details and information to bring individuals to justice. this is important. might i just add that federal air marshals have risen to the call of duty. federal air marshals came to new orleans, louisiana, during hurricane katrina. federal air marshals have been called upon in time of disaster and answered the call. i think it's important to note as we stand on the floor of the house to present this legislation to enhance their training that we appreciate their service. we thank them for the sacrifice of their families as they
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travel internationally on behalf of the american people. with that, i i would ask my colleagues to support this very important bill and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. all time is expired. the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 3963. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the aaffirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table.
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the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from tennessee rise? mr. cohen: mr. speaker, i ask that the house suspend the rules and pass house resolution 939. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the resolution. the clerk: house resolution 939, resolution extending condolences to the families of sergeant mark renninger,
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officer tina griswold, officer ronald owens, and officer greg richards. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from tennessee, mr. cohen, and the gentleman from texas, mr. poe, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from tennessee. mr. cohen: i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous matter on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. cohen: and i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recogni mr. cohen: this resolution extends condolences to the families of four lakewood, washington, police officers, sergeant mark renninger, officer tina griswold, officer ronald owens, and officer greg richards who were senselessly slain by gunfire in the line of duty on sunday, november 29, 2009. these brave and honorable lakewood police department officers were ambushed as they sat in a local coffee shop, catching up on paperwork at the beginning of their sunday morning shift. by way of this resolution, the house of representatives honors the lives and mourns the loss
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of these lakewood police officers. we join the city of lakewood and the entire state of washington in celebrating the lives and grieving the death of these police officers. sergeant mark renninger was described as, quote, a tough guy, unquote, who excelled at his job and regarded as leader and teacher in the close nit lakewood police force. he was married with three children. officer tina griswold liked to cook, ride her dirt bike and was a certified driver. her father's a retired police officer and began working in law enforcement as a dispatcher and came to lakewood five years ago as an officer. she leaves behind a 21-year-old daughter and a 7-year-old son. officer ronald owens, known to friends and family as ronnie, was described as having a fun-loving personality and someone who made everyone around him feel positive. officer owens leaves behind a daughter. officer greg richards enjoyed music in his spare time playing drums in a rock band. he liked nothing than spending time with his wife, kelly, and
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his three children. by passing this resolution we want to know that these families are not alone in their mourning the lakewood officers. my first job was attorney for the police department. i spent time in the memphis police department and i relate to those that are suffering. i urge all my colleagues to support this resolution and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from tennessee. texas. mr. poe: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. poe: first of all, i want to thank the gentleman from washington, mr. smith, for sponsoring this important legislation, and i rise in support of house resolution 939. this resolution extends our condolences to the families of sergeant mark renninger, officer tina griswold, officer ronald owens, and officer greg richards.
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these four police officers were members of the lakewood, washington, police department and were ambushed by gunfire in a murderous act of violence on november 29, 2009. these four officers were in uniform and sitting at a table in a coffee shop near their patrol area. they were preparing for their upcoming shift when a gunman with an extensive criminal record and out on bond for another criminal offense entered the location and suddenly fired gunshots at these officers. two of the officers were killed immediately, another was shot when he stood up from the table, and the fourth was shot after struggling with the gunman and attempting to prevent his escape. the gunman fled but not before one of the wounded dying officers had shot him. the gun was found two days later in seattle after he challenged yet another police officer who approached him. that police officer was a seven-year veteran of the seattle police force who noticed a parked, stolen car that was running but unoccupied.
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the officer approached the suspect outside the car and asked him to show his hands but the suspect refused and started to run around the car. the officer shot and killed the suspect to prevent his escape. the officer had recognized the gunman from photographs that identified him as the main suspect in the murders of these other officers. and the gunman was carrying a service weapon taken from one of the slain officers that he had murdered. unfortunately, police officers and law enforcement officials sometimes go unnoticed and unappreciated by communities that they protect. so far in 2009 111 american police officers have lost their lives in the line of duty protecting the rest of us. these noble men and women deserve respect and gratitude from our entire nation. peace officers like sergeant renninger, officer griswold, officer owens, officer richards perform their jobs every day with the knowledge that there is a possibility that they may give their lives in service to
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the communities that they protect. that's an awesome sacrifice, mr. speaker. as a nation, we are grateful to peace officers who readily accept such a tremendous burden and to their families who accept that burden as well. in the wake of this vicious tragedy, we come together in support of the law enforcement community and the families of these individuals. sergeant renninger was a 13-year law enforcement veteran. he is survived by his wife and three children. officer griswold, a 14-year police veteran and survived by her husband, a former deputy sheriff, and two children. officer owens, a 12-year veteran, is survived by his daughter. officer richards, an eight-year veteran, is survived by his wife and three children. the four officers were original members of the lakewood police department, which was founded just five years ago. they are the first officers from this department to be killed in the line of duty. as the resolution so aptly
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states, members of congress stand with the people of lakewood, washington, the men and women of the lakewood police department, and members of the law enforcement community as they honor the lives and mourn the loss of these four dedicated public servants and law enforcement heroes. i urge my colleagues to support this resolution, and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from tennessee. mr. cohen: mr. speaker, i yield three minutes or as much time as the gentleman shall consume to mr. smith from the state of washington. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from washington is recognized for such time as he may consume. mr. smith: thank you, mr. speaker. i want to thank the speaker in this chamber for bringing this resolution so quickly to the floor. as we have now heard the tragic events of last sunday, we are here to offer our condolences to the families, also to honor the lives and the service of the four officers who were so brutally slain and to express our grief over their loss. they were ambushed early on sunday morning simply getting ready to go to work.
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it is a tragedy that has had a deep impact on our community. and i want to offer my condolences to all the people in lakewood, especially their police force and the city officials that have been so impacted by the tragic of this event. the four officers that were killed were part of the police force and all of the police officers in this country who so selflessly serve and protect all of us. they were sergeant mark renninger, who is a 13-year law enforcement veteran. he started out with the tukwila police department before going to lakewood. he's survived by his wife, two daughters and son. officer tina griswold served 14 years in law enforcement starting with the lacey police department. she's survived by her husband and two children. officer ronald owens, who served 12 years in law enforcement, starting off with the washington state patrol before moving to lakewood. he is survived by a daughter. officer greg richards served eight years in law enforcement. he began with the kent police
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department before going to lakewood. he's survived by his wife and three children. it is very appropriate that congress makes clear to the families and to all members of the law enforcement community that we stand with them in grieving their loss and honoring their service. and it is also important that we remember as often as possible what our law enforcement personnel do for us. i had the opportunity to serve as a prosecutor for a few years and work with many of the members of our law enforcement community. and what a lot of people forget is the constant danger that they are in and the courage that it takes to do their job every day. . every second of every day people who serve as police officers know the risk and danger that they are taking. and the impressive thing is, they take it. every single day. and they do it to protect us, to give us a sense of safety and security in our community,
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despite the danger that they face. and the tragedy in lakewood makes that all too clear. they were simply sitting down for a cup of coffee to get their paperwork together before going on shift. that makes it clear just how much our officers are always at risk and how willingly they take that risk and protect us. i thank the house for pausing for a few moments today to remember the service of these four officers, to honor them for that service, to grieve over their deaths, and to express condolences to their families, to all of the people in lakewood, and to the larger law enforcement community that does so much to protect us and shows so much courage in doing so. i thank you. with that i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from texas. million poe: i yield as much time as he wishes to consume, to the gentleman from washington, sheriff reichert, who is
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familiar with this law enforcement agency and as a sherry represented much of this area. i yield him as of time as he wishes to use. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. reichert: i thank the judge for yielding. mr. chairman, i know that most of the people in washington, d.c., don't know these families that we are talking about today. the people here in washington, d.c., don't know the children that these officers will no longer be able to parent. but we do know police officers in washington, d.c., we do know police officers here, the capitol hill police department and d.c. police department, and we recognize the job they do every day to protect us. sometimes it's hard to make that connection between the men and women who wear the uniform, the
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sacrifices they make, until it happens in your neighborhood. until it happens in your community. until it happens to one of your neighborhood police officers. until it happens to your mother. your father. one minute sitting having coffee at a coffee shop, the next minute gone. three fathers and a mother. coming to work, protect all of us, happens every day on the streets of america. they put on the uniform. they know the risk. so with this resolution today i think it's right that we pause
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and think about the sacrifices that our men and women in uniform here serving our police departments and our communities across this country to honor the service of mark renninger, tina griswold, ronald owens, and gregory richards. we should also mention timothy brenton who was killed 30 days before this event, before this tragedy. he was also assassinated in the city of seattle and he was sitting in his police car. this can happen any time, any moment any police officer across this country. pausing to honor, mourn the loss of these four lakewood, washington police officers who were brutally murdered. sunday morning, just after thanksgiving, spending the week
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with their family. i think it's just and right that all of us here today extend our deepest sympathy to stand in solidarity and grief with the families, their fellow officers, their friends, and their community and the entire nation mourns. and our hearts are broken. to those involved in the hunt for the suspect, we commend you for your hard work and your bravery, your thorough and effective work saved the lives of other citizens and other officers from harm. and moving forward, i hope all of you understand how hard this will be for the families. i have, unfortunately, had the duty to notify family members of
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of their loved one's loss. it's pain and emotion you can't imagine. these families are in -- they are devastated. so, please, i would ask all of us to remember the families, don't forget, they need your support, your help, your prayers, and your love. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from tennessee. mr. cohen: i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from texas. mr. poe: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. poe: mr. speaker, next year on may 15 right here on the capitol grounds we will pay tribute and honor to peace officers that have been killed this year in the line of duty.
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until this event in washington state, there were 111 peace officers killed in this country in the line of duty. now there are 115, and they will be honored, their families will be honored next year. having spent most of my career at the courthouse in houston as a prosecutor and criminal court judge, i saw a lot of police officers come down to the courthouse. and sometimes they didn't show up. and the reason was because some criminal had decided to take their life. but that is the occupation that they chose. to risk their lives for the rest of us. and we should always be mindful of the men and women that wear the uniform, wear the uniform at home to protect us against domestic criminals and wear the uniform overseas to protect us from international criminals.
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peace officers, mr. speaker, are the last strand of wire in the fence between the people and the lawless. every day they put on their uniform and they put above their heart on their chest a badge which is really a shield. a shield that's symbolic of protecting the community from the evildoers. it goes back centuries ago. yet they wear that shield proudly to protect us from people who wish to do us harm. and when individuals make the decision to harm those that protect us, it is an american tragedy. and the whole country mourns with the families who have lost a police officer. so, i urge that we mourn the loss of these officers. that we honor their lives and their bravery. and that we pass this resolution
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immediately. with that i yield back the remainder of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from tennessee. mr. cohen: thank you, mr. speaker. i join with my friend from texas in urging that we pass this resolution and that we do mourn these brave officers who lost their lives. and stand with the people of lakewood, washington. i also ask us to think about what happened, why these people lost their lives. we may never know. but we do know that the person who killed them should have been behind bars. he was a criminal who was released from prison in arkansas through executive clemency. and it's -- while there are certainly people who committed victimless crimes who are unnecessarily kept for long periods of times in incarceration and should be -- have clemency or some type of executive relief, people who commit crimes of violence as
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this person did, they should not be released unless there is some extra circumstances that are beyond anybody's thought that it was appropriate. this gentleman was not reformed. he committed other crimes. he should have still been in jail. you got to think about mental health. the man was a criminal but he was also mentally ill. he had delusions that he was some type of religious figure. we have to think about the mental health laws we have up here and the opportunity to fund mental health institutions and get mental health so people can be treated before they commit some act out of a delusional aspect of their disease. so there are a lot of other areas we need to look into as we mourn these officers and remember 9/11 and the fire people and police people who were killed there. and we've got to remember the issues with guns. and how this man got access to a gun to commit this crime. so there are other issues that need to be looked at, but i join all the members of the house and
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ask that we pass h.res. 939 and join in mourning the loss of these four fine law enforcement officers, but also that we continue our research into the causes of this heinous crime. i yield back the balance of my time. and ask that we -- the speaker pro tempore: all time yielded back. the question is will the house suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 939. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the resolution is agreed to, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table.
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for what purpose does the gentleman from tennessee rise? mr. gordon: i move the house suspend the rules and agree to h.r. 515, the radioactive import deterrence act as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar number 200, h.r. 515, the bill to prohibit the importation of certain low level radioactive waste into the united states. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from tennessee, mr. gordon, and the gentleman from florida, mr. stearns, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from tennessee. mr. gordon: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. gordon: i also ask unanimous
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consent to insert two letters into the record reflecting the under jng reached by the energy and commerce -- understanding reached by the energy and commerce committee regarding this legislation. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. gordon: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. gordon: the radioactive import deterrence act is a bipartisan bill that would ban the importation of low-level radioactive waste unless the president provides a waiver. low-level radioactive waste is generated by medical facilities, university research labs, and utility companies. this waste is generated all over the united states, but finding permanent disposal sites has proven difficult. currently 36 states and the district of columbia have only one approved site to store all the waste generated in those industries. that site is located in utah. the site stores 99% of the united states low-level
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radioactive waste. however the nuclear regulatory commission is currently considering the importation of 20,000 tons of italian low-level waste to be permanently disposed of at the utah site. this would be the largest importation of foreign waste ever. the united states stands alone as the only country in the world that imports other country's radioactive waste for permanent disposal. other countries are reading the signs that the u.s. is poised to become a nuclear dumping ground, permit applications are also pending for importation of brazilian and mexican waste. foreign waste threatens the capacity that we have setaside in this country for the waste generated by our domestic industries. it is critical that congress protect the capacity by providing -- prohibiting these imports. i support nuclear power as part of our energy mix. 104 commercial nukewlar plants in the united states -- nuclear
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plants in the united states help to provide 20% of our nation's energy needs. if we are going to support the continued growth of our domestic nuclear industry, we must ban the practice of disposing of other countries' radioactive waste. we must reserve that capacity for our domestic needs. the bill is the product of a bipartisan cooperation and has received multiple hearings in the energy and commerce committee. i urge my colleagues to stand firm against the importation of foreign radioactive waste and to support this bipartisan bill. with that i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from florida. . mr. stearns: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. stearns: the gentleman is very talented. but shakespeare said to err is human. and in this case, the gentleman from tennessee has erred,
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particularly in this bill. so i stand here and not support of his grand bill here. i think many in congress are perhaps frustrated that we're not focusing on domestic nuclear waste disposal issues which obviously need to be resolved if we're ever going to revitalize our nuclear industry. instead, we're talking about this bill. and in effect this bill is going to hurt businesses in their area trying to create jobs and trying to promote economic fwrothe. it will actually discourage it. the administration has irresponsibly turned down -- turned us back on yucca mountain. waste repository site leaving us with no clear plan to dispose of high level of radioactive waste and spent nuclear fuel and leaving taxpayers liable for potentially billions of dollars in damages. now, this bill, mr. speaker, does not focus on high level radioactive waste but rather it focuses on what is known as a
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class a radioactive waste. now, my colleagues, this is the lowest of lowest level of radioactive waste. now, supporters of this bill will say that we lack sufficient capacity in the united states for this waste. let's talk about what the g.a.o. says. they have testified that class a waste disposal capacity is simply not a problem. in the short term or the long term. g.a.o. had some real concerns about disposal capacity for what is known as class b and c waste but not this class a waste. now, what does this legislation do to deal with spent nuclear fuel or the impending class b and c waste disposal crisis? nothing. nothing is done. instead, it would prevent u.s. companies from competing in the global marketplace by restraining trade in this very
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low-level waste. now, a lot of us will hear the word radioactive, and this is perhaps a word that is radioactive to lawmakers, but it should not frighten us once we look at this and become clear that what we're talking about is the same kind of waste that you find in a home smoke detector. i think everybody in this chamber as well as everybody in the house probably has a smoke detector in their home. so that's the type of low-level waste we're talking about. i want american companies and american workers to be able to fully participate in the nuclear renaissance. you know, it's happening in china, certainly, including the handling of this low-level waste. this is anti-jobs and anti-trade bill. it will simply ban americans from the marketplace, and that's why reluctantly many on this side of the aisle oppose this legislation and voted against it when it was in the
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full committee. i am also concerned that this bill may have negative unintended consequences on top of the intended ones. in addition to restricting the ability of u.s. companies to bid on secure foreign contracts, this bill may prevent u.s. companies in the future from working cooperatively with foreign companies on other nuclear projects. the bill will prohibit the importation of this low-level waste into the united states unless it is being sent to a federal government on -- or military facility or other limited exceptions. so i do not believe that the importations of very common low-level waste has issues. the g.a.o. didn't think so either. at the same time i don't believe that the u.s. nuclear companies are to participate -- i do not believe that if u.s. nuclear companies are to participate in the global nuclear services market and to compete with foreign-owned companies, they must simply be able to manage and dispose of
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the low-level waste incidental to their work and subject to n.r.c.'s already strict regulations and requirements. so think about that. we already have in place through the n.r.c. the necessary regulations and requirements. this is going to overlap on that. so, mr. speaker, i'd like to create jobs. i hope we can not erect new trade barriers and put our own employers and workers at a competitive disadvantage. i think simply this bill would. with that i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from tennessee. mr. gordon: madam speaker -- mr. speaker, i yield such time as he may consume to my friend and the co-author of this bipartisan bill, mr. matheson. the speaker pro tempore: mr. matheson is recognized. mr. matheson: i thank mr. gordon for yielding. before i begin my comments, i have a copy of a resolution that was passed by the salt
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lake city county council in support of the rid act. i ask unanimous consent to include that in the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. matheson: the energy and commerce committee has held two hearings on this issue. one in the previous congress and one in this congress. and during those hearings we really flushed out this issue in a way that i think makes some pretty clear points that justify moving this bill. first of all, what was established is that there is confusion about what u.s. policy is relative to importation of radioactive waste from foreign countries. there really is a gap in policy here because as our low-level radioactive waste policy has developed over the last two or three decades, foreign waste wasn't really even considered. it just wasn't conceived that we would even take waste from other countries. as mr. gordon indicated, no other country in the world takes another country's radioactive waste. i think that appears to have
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been the assumption in terms of when policies was developed in this country. but what has happened in the last few years is our efforts and contracts being signed to move waste from italy. there's discussion about brazil, mexico, great britain to move low-level radioactive waste to this country. the nuclear regulatory commission says we have no authority to determine whether or not waste from foreign countries should be allowed in this country. so then we turn to the next regulatory body that we have in this country, and that is the system of state-run compacts that was established in federal law primarily in 1980 and again in 19 5. and the nuclear waste compacts are the ones who have this role in deciding how to handle low-level radioactive waste. the state of utah happens to be the member of the northwest compact. when this proposal to move waste from italy was put before the compact, the compact with the state of utah opposing the importation of this waste, the
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compact fwred with the state of utah and moved to disallow this shipment. at that point this matter was taken to the courts. a federal district court has ruled the compacts had no authority to stop this either. that case is currently on appeal. but what this points out and the reason i walk through these steps is to illustrate there is a lot of confusion out there and everybody is pointing at a different direction on who is in charge of this issue. seems to me this issue ought to be addressed by congress. it's up from a public policy perspective to discuss whether or not as a policy of this country we should accept another country's radioactive waste. i happen to think we shouldn't. no other country in the world does. i don't think we should either. there has been mentioned that there is a restraint of trade issue in preventing u.s. companies from competing. i don't know of any other country that takes imported waste. for trade to exist you have goods and services going in both directions, not just in one. i don't understand how this in
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any way can be described as a restraint of trade. secondly, the capacity of this country for handling low-level waste is an issue because from what i've heard, not many states want a nuclear waste site for this low-level waste. even though you heard descriptions that this low-level waste may be no more dangerous than in a smoke detector when you talks about tons and tons of this low-level radioactive waste, not a lot of states are lining up to take it. as we move forward as a country in a climate-constrained world where i believe and i support development of more nuclear power plants, which in addition to high-level fuel rods do generate waste, we need to have to dispose of that waste. and when the g.a.o. did analyze the site of utah to discuss the capacity issue, as was pointed out during the congressional hearings before the energy and commerce committee, it was pointed out that the g.a.o. only looked at one year's worth
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of data for how much waste was put in. and they just took that law from that year and projected it out in the future. which i'm a little disappointed that the g.a.o. would make such an elementary mistake on how you project a trend because the one year they used was a particularly low year in terms of volume of waste. and in fact, even with that assumption, they projected that it could go on somewhere between 20 and 30 years. that is not necessarily a long amount of time when you tarbg about -- talk about storage of low-level waste in this country. that's not a lot of time when you consider the issue that most states don't want one of these sites in their states. and i submit if you take the longer view of the life cycle of a nuclear power plant, that 20 to 30 years is not a long amount of time and that's the storage capacity we have at this site. by the way, the g.a.o. report did not assume any foreign radioactive waste would be
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going in the site when they made the analysis of what the capacity was. so i think this is a good bill. i think this addresses a gap in policy today. it will create greater certainty for the future of the nuclear industry in this country. i think it aligns the united states with the rest of the world in how we deal with importation of radioactive waste. i want to thank mr. gordon for his leadership on this issue. i encourage my colleagues to support the bill, and i'll yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from florida is recognized. mr. stearns: mr. speaker, i ask how much time i have left? the speaker pro tempore: 16 minutes. mr. stearns: ok. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. stearns: i think if you try to look at this as a broad picture, around the world a lot of countries are actually building nuclear power plants and there are countries that
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are decommissioning these. there are currently 436 nuclear reactors worldwide with 53 under construction. china has 16 reactors under construction. so this renaissance is occurring. it's global. so, you know, i think if you're going to have companies that are involved with the construction and decommissioning of nuclear power plants and they want to say, ok, i want to bid, these countries will accept the bid from the united states but if the united states is limiting them in how they're getting rid of the low-level radioactive waste, it's going to put -- make it more difficult to make that company to compete. again, you know, this is not a serious problem. as far as i know, there has not been any indirect harm to individuals because of this. i obviously view this bill, the authors are doing this as a safety measure. and i respect that.
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but this low radioactive waste is used in smoke detectors as well as exit signs on the interstate. so the implementation of this bill is going to be more regulatory and the nuclear regulatory commission is already doing this. so why would we need this bill? and i think as pointed out earlier in my statement, we have so many other class b and class c waste that we really should be concentrating on and not this form of class which is very low radioactive. so i think, mr. speaker, this is not a serious problem. i respect the authors, what they're trying to do, and unfortunately i think it's not a need of this kind of regulatory overlay on the nuclear regulatory commission which has already done a wonderful job decades after decades. so with that, mr. speaker, i'd urge my colleagues not to support and vote no on the bill, and i yield back the
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balance of my time -- well, i better retain the balance of my time because i know they still have speakers. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from tennessee. mr. gordon: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. gordon: i have to say that my friend from florida's making a valiant effort. let me just talk to him about a couple of things. first of all, shakespeare also says don't rope-a-dope me. this is not being fema material. this is a material. we want to see nuclear material to help us deal with our climate change. he says this is not a serious problem. well, it's a very serious problem if you are a lab, if you're a hospital, if you are a utility and you have no place to take your low-level radioactive waste. and for 37 states, there's no place else to go but utah. and when that runs out, it's out.
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and so that's a very serious problem. he says it's going to hurt business. it's not going to hurt business. i mean, there's a finite amount of space there. either you put in american waste or foreign waste. so there's no business going to be hurt there. and finally, don't worry about it. it's a smoke detector. well, if it's only smoke detectors, why are we putting up barbed wire fence, why do we have guards and why does it have to stay there permanently? it's much more than that. so there are serious problems here. this is a matter of american competitiveness. and for that reason, i think that this bill does, this bipartisan bill does need to pass. and i reserve the balance of my time. . mr. stearns: i reserve the balance of my time. i think the gentleman from tennessee has additional speakers. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from tennessee. mr. gordon: i regret that my friend from florida has no one to defend him here today.
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but i -- for that reason i yield to mr. chaffetz such time he may consume. another person who this will directly impact. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah is recognized. mr. chaffetz: thank you, mr. speaker. i appreciate, mr. gordon, the good fine work he's done putting this bill together in a broad bipartisan support. i appreciate the leadership of jim mathison who for years has led out on this issue. in short, for those of you that are supportive of the nuclear industry, like me, want to see the expansion of nuclear industry, we need to make sure we reserve the capacity so we can deal with the waste. we won't be able to have the expansion unless we have the capacity to actually store the waste. for those of you that don't want to see any sort of expansion of the nuclear industry, then why in the world would you ever want to take nuclear waste from foreign countries? i'm a very strong supporter of nuclear power. currently nuclear reactors in america provide the united
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states with roughly 20% of its electricity. yet we built no new reactors since 1978. that's why i'm a co-sponsor of the american energy act. this bill establishes a national goal of bringing 100 new nuclear reactors on line over the next 20 years. achieving this goal is important for our economy, our environment, and for energy independence. this is why facilities like the one located in clye facility need to dedicate their capacities to storage of american products. expansion of our nuclear capacity will be nearly impossible if we allow our storage facilities to become saturated with foreign nuclear waste. i support this bill and oppose the importation of waste into the country based on the basic laws of supply and demand. if the waste generated by italian companies is so valuable, why do businesses in europe not step up to the plate? there's a reason why with $1 billion on the line there's not one place in europe that's willing to step up and take it. it's dangerous. it's very dangerous.
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other european countries do not want to take the risk of importing waste into their country. it's not a risk i want to take for the state of utah, my country, and i believe by paffering this bill i'm confident that market force also find a home for the waste somewhere other than the united states. we can continue to propel the nuclear industry forward in the united states of america. i thank the gentleman for yielding me time. and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from florida. mr. stearns: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. stearns: i notice that the advocates for this have all these people from utah. i wonder if that's a coincidence. i see the gentleman from tennessee has no one but people from utah. i am going to reveal a secret to him that perhaps he didn't know and the people from utah didn't know. fortunately on this side we have the claire voyans to find -- claire voyance to find out, in
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checking with the utah facility we found they do indeed have the capacity to take this low-level waste. not just for another year but for decades. and decades. so i know the people on that side say this is not true, but the information we are getting back which is probably news to the gentleman from tennessee that the facility is capable of taking this. i would just indicate that our main concern also is that those companies are trying to do business in this renaissance for nuclear construction are going to be hampered because of this bill. with that, mr. speaker, i yield the gentleman from tennessee, mr. roe, as much time as he may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from tennessee is recognized. mr. roe: thank you, mr. speaker. h.r. 515 is a worthy attempt to deal with an issue that deserves a long-term solution. our ability to store, process nuclear waste. i think all members want to ensure we have adequate space --
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storage space and i commend the gentleman from tennessee for trying to deal with this complicated issue. i fundamentally support the gentleman's goalcy which is to stop the long-term storage of foreign waste in our country. the problem as i see it is that the bills will stop any operation that safely imports, process, or exports low-level nuclear material in this country a company in my district processes a waste and returns it to the country of origin which does not impact the long-term domestic storage. this legislation would prohibit them from doing this and impact jobs at a time when jobs are scarce. i certainly would like to work with my esteemed colleague from tennessee to make changes in this legislation that would achieve this goal of halting the permanent storage of foreign waste while allowing companies that safely process and export this material to continue to do so. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. mr. stearns: i yield myself 30 seconds. the gentleman had a very
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balanced approach to it in his statement and also he is from the great state of tennessee so we have balanced opinion from one side to the other from the great state of tennessee. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from tennessee. mr. gordon: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. mr. speaker, my time is coming to an end but i could share some of that with my friend from florida if he would like to volunteer the state of florida as a repository for some of this low-level radioactive waste. mr. stearns: would the gentleman yield? mr. gordon: yes, i would. mr. stearns: i would consider that proposal. would you withdrawal this bill? mr. gordon: once you get it cite sited, this bill would not be be necessary. mr. stearns: during the process would you put this bill on the back burner? mr. gordon: i don't think it would be the responsible thing
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to do for our country. for that reason i yield to my friend from utah to clarify one of the earlier statements. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah is recognized. mr. mathison: thank you, mr. speaker. i just wanted to clarify one comment made by the gentleman from florida about capacity in utah. it's interesting the company is telling people they have so much capacity. they made a commitment to our governor they were not going to asker for any increase in the license capacity compared to what they've got now. it just so happened when they came to testify before the energy and commerce committee in the written testimony they included tables that assumed great expansion of this site. but the state of utah is not licensed that expansion. they made a commitment to our governor they weren't going to apply for an increase in the size from the capacity that exists today. i'm not sure if they are talking both sides of their mouth now if they are telling the side they have plenty of capacity. i would put it on the record that that company is on record that they said they would not add any capacity to this -- make a license request to increase the capacity of the site. i yield back.
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mr. gordon: the northwest compact, did they volunteer to take this radioactive waste? the imported waste. mr. mathison: the northwest compact, made some reference to in my earlier statement, voted against taking this waste. mr. gordon: what was the governor's position. what was the position of the company -- what action did they take? mr. mathison: the company took the state and northwest compact to court. mr. gordon: they sued them? mr. mathison: they disagreed. with the decision with the court and the state of utah. mr. gord: i reclaim the balance of my time. mr. stearns: i'm going to possibly attempt to reply to my colleague. i ask request for additional one minute. as i understand it this appeal process went through and it's
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still in courts of the the final judgment has not been made. i think that the gentleman from utah sort of illustrates what i think is true that the company says they have the capacity to handle this. the overall position i think of many of us is that it's going to hurt u.s. companies who are trying to compete with global nuclear services and the marketplace. and as i pointed out, this is a global and highly competitive technical industry and it's growing. and we should not handicap companies who wish to compete in it. and this class a radioactive waste is just -- very minimal. we are able to take care of it for decades and decades. the nuclear regulatory commission was able to take care of it. they testified it's no problem. it's not a problem for the long or short term. with that, mr. chairman, i think i'm completely finished. so at this point i yield back the balance of my time. i have no further speakers. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from tennessee is
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recognized. mr. gordon: i yield myself such time as i may consume. i say to my friend from florida, i'm not sure how much water this cup will hold. but when it's full, it's full. now, i'm not sure how much we -- we can talk about how much radioactive material the utah site can hold, but when it's full it's going to be full and there will be no more left. i think we need to recognize that. in conclusion, let me just say, this is very simple. very simple. there's only one nation in the world that allows other countries to ship their radioactive waste to that country for permanent disposal. that's the united states. and quite frankly it was a loophole because it was never expected that that would happen. so what we are doing with this legislation is simply bringing it into compliance with the rest of the world. saying that our country will not accept radioactive waste.
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there's 20,000 tons ready to come in, as well as other countries are asking to bring that waste in. we are simply saying that we are going to abide by what all the rest of the countries do. they say if you have radioactive waste, if you are going to be producing it, you need to take care of it. just like every other country. i think that's fair. i think that's reasonable. i think that is -- i certainly yield to my friend from florida. mr. stearns: i thank the gentleman. to you folks when you hold up that glass, there's another glass in texas that is willing to take this lower radioactive waste. you should know that-- mr. gordon: reclaiming my time. has that site been certified? mr. stearns: i think it's in the process of being certified. mr. gordon: it hasn't been certified. mr. stearns: if you don't mind i'm going to yield to your colleague from tennessee. he has a question for you.
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mr. gordon: i'll be happy to yield. mr. roe: just one question. thank you for yielding. is it a problem to have the waste brought into this country and then shipped out? back to the country of origin or wherever it's disposed of. we have a country -- mr. gordon: i understand that. i'm sympathetic to the company and talked to them. the difficult -- difficulty is whether that waste has been separated. i talked with them personally and they have said they don't ship it all back. they keep some of it here. and once you combine an a level with a b or c level there are additional problems. i'm sympathetic to your concerns. we want to continue with that dialogue. i hope that that can be rectified. but so far we do not have that. it's not before us today. what we have before us today is a very simple proposition. is the united states going to be the only country in the world that's going to use our limited space, storage space to
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permanently dispose of tons and tons of radioactive waste from other countries. that's the question before us today. and we have a bipartisan bill that tries to answer that. does my friend need additional time? mr. stearns: i thank my colleague for allowing me the time i did. mr. gordon: if there's no additional time -- i understand that mr. terry, a member of our committee, is on his way. he's going to have to get here pretty soon. but i'm sure that he would as a co-sponsor of this bipartisan bill i think he would want me to say on his behalf that it is not in the interest of nebraska, his home state torques have no other place to send their radioactive waste, whether it's from a hospital, from a lab, or anywhere else but to utah.
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and that i would say that he would be very concerned with what is nebraska going to do with that waste if there is no other place to send it? i'm sure he could say it much more eloquent than me, but i -- for that reason then i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. all time has been yielded back. the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 515 as amended. so many as are in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed. mr. stearns: on that i request a recorded vote. the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: does the gentleman ask for the yeas and nays? mr. stearns: i do, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman asks for the yeas and nays. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted.
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a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20 and the chair's prior announcement, further proceedings on this motion will be postponed. . the speaker pro tempore: the chair lays before the house the following enrolled bill. the clerk: senate 1860, an act to permit each current member of the board of directors of the office of compliance to serve for three terms.
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it is time for a new chapter in governance. the president detailed last night steps that had to be taken under the umbrella of the days of blank checks were opened. and that if president karzai is willing and able to make changes in governments.
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that we will identify people at the subcabinet level, at a district level. that can implement the tints of services and basic governance without ruppings that afghans need. i would say obviously president karzai in his inaugural speech said some encouraging things. pretty much what the president has done is provide a strong incentive to the karzai government to get its act together. there is a transition point for the afghans. which was gotten as part of this review. established the transition point of july, 2011, which ensures that the afghans have to make progress. we fully believe that we have to have that willing partner. we believe that this policy puts in place the necessary incentives to make sure that that happens. >> you actually have really that much leverage over him and what he does? >> i -- look, two things. i think based on what he said in his inaugural, based on conversations back and forth the two presidents have it, the president remains -- is confident that president karzai understands what's expected. i would say, again, the reason why there's a transition point
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provides a incentive to ensure what steps will and must be taken. the president is very serious about that. i think again outlining that the time for blank checks was over. >> did karzai every ask for such a timeline or withdrawal point to not be set? >> not that i'm aware of. >> a couple of things also on afghanistan. today secretary gates the u.s. might not begin to scale back the troop surge until after july, 2011. is that some kind of discrepancy ? and also what does the president see happening in the next 18 months? afghanistan? what would be different between now and then? if things don't work out is he open to a course correction?
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>> let me -- three things. let me -- on the third thing i think is related very much to the second which is what the president envisions is quite frankly what he laid out in some detail last night over the course of more than 30 minutes. we are going to increase the number of our forces in afghanistan, getting more there sooner and staying for a longer period of time. in order to degrade the taliban. fight that insurgency. at the same time help train afghan national security forces and army and police and accelerating that to the point where the transition moment that the president identified as july, 2011, is the point that he believes we should begin that transition. and begin to, i think you heard
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secretary gates say today, we have build, we have hold but importantly we have transfer. and we -- we are not going to be there forever. the president said that. the folks testifying today said that. this is not an open-ended commitment. we are going to provide them with the incentives that they need via this transition point to get their act together, to train that security force and army so that beginning in july, 2011 we can transfer the responsibility of afghan security to the afghans. that's what's fundamentally important about this. and i think the president believes based on the decision we made this is the best course forward. >> foreign defense secretary rumsfeld took issue on the  speech last night and i just want to clarify t the prs said commanders in afghanistan repeatedly asked for support to deal with the re-emergence of
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the taliban. but they did not arrive. i assume you are referring to the request in 2008? >> that's what the line of the speech -- i will let secretary rumsfeld explain to you and to others whether he thinks that the effort in afghanistan was sufficiently resourced during thinks tenure. as secretary of defense. i think that's something that -- >> he said he's not aware of a sickle request of that nature between 2001 and 2006 when he was secretary of defense. >> i'll let him explain to the american public whether he believes the effort in afghanistan during 2001 and 2006 was appropriately resourced. you go to war with the secretary of defense you have, jay. >> that's cute. the question is what specifically was president obama talking about when he said that? >> what president obama was talking about were additional
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resource requests that came in during 2008 which we have discussed in here. again, i'll leave it to the secretary of defense in 2001 through 2006 to discuss the level of resourcing for that understanding the level of commitment that we already had dedicated in iraq. and whether or not he feels sufficient that history will judge the resourcing decisions that he made during that time period in the war in afghanistan were or were not sufficient. >> some democrats on the hill have said today that they think that the president should pursue a war authorization for this surge of troops. are you guys thinking about doing that at all? >> i think the president made very clear last evening that why we are there now. the conditions for what happened on september 11 brought our
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forces through almost unanimous vote of congress to afghanistan. obviously that is plenty sufficient to -- for what the president is talking about. >> just one more. in his march speech president obama mentioned that if the taliban returns to controlling afghanistan it would be bad for human rights. he specifically singled out women and girls. he did not mention human rights in afghanistan. he talked about human rights more broadly. last night he didn't mention human rights in afghanistan and he definitely didn't mention -- >> i believe in the context of the three pillars that he saw mentioning the basic recognition of human rights in afghanistan is obviously important to what is happening there. >> he didn't mention women and girls. >> i think the umbrella of basic human rights was the same. >> he didn't mention last night.
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we are not supposed to read anything into that? >> i have not looked exactly at the phrasing of each speech. but the umbrella -- recognizing the basic human rights of everybody in afghanistan would include that, yes. >> since there's this withdrawdown date s. there a high degree of sencht there will be stability in afghanistan by then? or is stability less of an issue and more of local afghan forces are able to handle the situation whatever it may be? >> i don't think -- i don't think you can have one without the other. i think -- i would refer you to the testimony that secretary gates gave today which he believed what we had laid out was very achievable in the transition time frame that the president spoke about last night. again, part of that is to build
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in in incentivizing for the afghans to do what they need to do. we can't and we won't be there forever. the role of providing security for the afghans will have to rest primarily with afghan national security forces. that's what the -- this new dedication of resources will do is accelerate that training and ultimately the president believes, the team believes in developing that time frame that those conditions will be met. >> ultimately, then, it's up to the afghans to really run that time line, right? because if they don't -- if they don't come up to speed, then you believe at that point? draw it down? >> again, well -- we are there to make sure that it happens. that's why, again, just for some
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historical, we started when the president as mentioned last night put his hand on the bible in january 20. we had roughly 32,000 men and women in uniform in afghanistan. right. that has increased to roughly 68,000 by the end of the summer of 2009. .
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believe it's achievable in the time frame that the president enuciated last night. >> we've seen the president in the past when he rolls out any new initiative whether it's health care or stimulus, he always takes it on the road to really sell it to the american people. he's not doing anything today or this week. is he going to push this new strategy? >> yeah. obviously, we got an important event tomorrow in jobs forum. we have activities on friday in allentown to talk about jobs and the economy. i anticipate -- that schedule is largely obviously set. i anticipate that the president -- i think you've seen him say this. i think the president understands explaining why
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we're there, why the decision was made, how we came to that decision and what it means for both the american people and the afghan people is not a one-shot deal. that we are going to have to continually talk to the american people and give them updates and assessments on where we are. i think the president will continue to do that. we don't have anything specifically laid out on the schedule to do that but i anticipate we will continue to do it throughout the year and next. [inaudible] >> there are oil pipelines in afghanistan is the reason why we're staying there? >> did he ignore -- i'm sorry -- >> he didn't mention the oil pipeline. does that have anything to do with his decision? >> no. i've never heard that come up in the, say, nine or 10 meetings i was in. i think, helen, just to go through what the president said last night, as a result of a
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taliban-provided safe haven for al qaeda, 19 men hijacked four planes and murdered nearly 3,000 people on september 11, 2001. >> i mean, the previous administration had that part under control. are you going to keep referring to 9/11 as a cause? >> again, as jake mentioned in the authorization to go into afghanistan was as a result quite clearly of the activities of al qaeda in a taliban-provided safe haven in afghanistan. that's why we're -- that's why we're in afghanistan right now. >> i know. you said you are going to make an [inaudible] >> well, go ahead. i'm sorry. [inaudible] >> how do you do that? isn't that an intervention?
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>> we're in afghanistan. >> yeah, you are. we are. >> again, i think -- we have a plan that is -- that incentivizes actions, whether it's training security forces, whether it's improving governs -- governance. if those that are responsible and they are at a different level are providing the services that a government has to and needs to provide its people then we'll have a great relationship with working with those people. yet, those people -- let me finish. if those people don't, then we will find people that will. >> why? >> because we have -- we will have by the -- by sometime next year, by middle of next year, 98,000 american men and women in addition to -- right. but, helen, i think if you --
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you ask the afghan government whether they want us to be there right now helping train their national security force and helping to root out the insurgesency in the taliban, yes, they approve of us being there quite clearly. i think what's important is understanding -- they understand we are not going to be there forever, that they are going to change their behavior in order to take ultimate responsibility for their country because our commitment is not open-ended. >> why do they have to demand a sovereign country what they do? >> again, helen, there is an authorization that allows us to do the military activities from a congressional standpoint and, again, i think if you ask president karzai and others whether we're there and they like us to be there, the answer to that is yes. what we want them to understand is there can't be a permanent dependence on us being there,
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that we are going to incentivize, again, through changes in governance and in training putting on to them the responsibility of both running a government that meets the needs of the people and training and equipping a security force that will provide the necessary security to prevent the taliban from overthrowing the government, as the president said, or creating a safe haven that would allow al qaeda to return and plan and plot another attack on our homeland. jim. >> does the president believe he must have the support of the american people to prosecute a war? >> i think the president believes throughout this process it will be important to talk to the american people about, as he did last night, why we are there, what we hope to achieve and when we're going to come home. i think the president laid out
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why we're there, the importance of why we're there and the consequences of our efforts. i think that the american people i think wanted to know that hard decisions were made, hard choices were looked at and this policy and the questions were reviewed intensively and that happened over this process. >> is he going to pay attention whether -- right now clearly the majority of americans don't support sending more troops over there, will he be listening -- >> what poll are you -- well, let me say this because i am not going to get into this. the president didn't make a national security decision last night or in the previous days leading up to last night based on polling. >> but he did make clear that he thinks he can convince the american people that this is the right way to go?
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will this effect his decision? >> well, clearly the decision that he's made is the right decision and he'd like to tell the american people why he believes that decision is right. >> he doesn't have that [inaudible] >> again, i don't think this is a one-shot deal. ok. i don't think that -- i'm sure any number of your news organizations will call their polling centers tonight and poll reaction of the president's speech, adding more troops, this and that. you know, this isn't a one-shot deal. >> i am not talking instantaneous. i am talking about over the coming months. if public support is still low for sending these troops, is the president going to reconsider on that basis? >> we didn't make the decision based on political polling. we're not going to look at the polls and make decisions going forward based on that. chip, the president asked us yesterday in some stuff that he did, if we looked at political polls before we made decisions, it's very likely that the
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financial system would have suffered a collapse, right? it's very likely there would be one domestic auto company. well, hold on. let me finish. there would be one domestic auto company, and maybe we would have pulled out of afghanistan. understand the president didn't believe that our financial system collapsing, did not believe the collapse of two out of the three auto companies in this country was wise, nor does he think obviously based on the decision that he made, as he said last night, leaving afghanistan that any of those things are in our national interest. they may not poll well at any given point, but that's not the decision the president makes. he doesn't call his pollster in to make a policy decision. >> it's different when i interviewed him recently. he said he agreed with the concept that you can't wage a war without the support of the american people. does he still agree with that? and if he doesn't convince them to support this, will he
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continue anyway? >> the president believes and is anxious to continue talking with the american people as he did last night about why he thinks this is the best way. chip, your network and four other networks didn't -- wow -- is that -- ok. that's the air or the thunder. didn't give precious network time willy-nilly. they gave it because they understand the importance of this decision. the president wanted to talk to the american people about. >> in the hearing today with clinton -- forgive my infor malt. but people tried to nail down this july 20, 2011 date. and lindsey graham, in exchange with lindsey graham, the secretary of defense, said it's our plan and other -- another senator called it a target, and there was no specific disagreement. would the white house agree with that description of july
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20, that it's a target and a plan? >> no, july, 2011, is the point in which the president believes our troops are going to begin to transition out, and the responsibility of security is going to go -- beginning to go in certain places to the afghans. >> disagree with the idea that it's a target? >> i did not look at those particular points in the hearing. i'm not necessarily sure that each of the characterizations that you said are contradictory. >> he says he believes at that point? >> well, yes. that's the policy is -- let me be clear. let me be clear because the president was clear. our forces in july of 2011 will transition out of afghanistan. again, understand what he said. this is a conditions-based drawdown. decisions made by the commander in chief. but that's -- understand where we're talking about, understand
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where we got to july, 2011. you are talking roughly of a two-year time period of most of the increased number of troops that were in -- either in the pipeline or the president authorized at the end of march, ok? so for at least a two-year period of time, right, from let's say roughly july, 2009, to july, 2011, you will have at least an increase of roughly 35,000 forces over that two-year period of time. over a one-year period of time, again, roughly july, 2010, to july, 2011, you will have give or take a few thousand that come in and come out, an increase of 63,000 troops for that time. that is in excess -- that is a time period greatly in excess of what we saw in iraq with a troop delta -- a change in troops greatly in excess of what we saw in iraq. >> so the drawdown will begin in july -- >> conditions based --
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>> if conditions warrant it? >> a conditions-based drawdown will begin in july, 2011. >> the pace? >> the pacing. we are in transitioning in july of 2011 from americans providing the primary security, we are giving that responsibility to an afghan national security force that we have trained over this 18 to 24-month period, putting them in the lead and transitioning our forces out. >> and the pace of -- >> the pacing of that -- >> this issue will not be in any way changed or pushed back? >> that's the president the -- that's the date the president outlined last night. >> i listened quite clearly what the president said last evening. >> the president brought up the $30 billion figure in how much it was going to cost but he didn't get in the details of
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how -- >> i don't anticipate that's going to be gotten to in the next couple of days. >> what's the time frame of this or are you working with congress? how is this going to work? >> we are going to work inside here and with congress. i think the president was clear that obviously the pentagon through its assessments and through its advice have denoted the importance of what we're doing in afghanistan. the president has dedicated additional resources and we're going to have to account for and pay for that. >> is this something that if you have to d deficit spending you have to do? >> well, sure. in all honesty, chuck, i don't think there has been a military conflict in the history of our country where that hasn't happened. now the difference being is we have to account for this, ok? we have a change in our fiscal situation over the previous eight years not -- partly
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because through a process there was no accounting for, an increased amount of war spending. as the president said last night we spent during this time period before he got into office roughly $1 trillion in iraq and afghanistan that has to be accounted for as part of our fiscal situation. >> how quickly do you think you are going to be asking congress for this supplement? >> i think the o.m.b. here and the pentagon are clearly going to look at what amount of funding is currently -- what amount of funding is currently there for how long and obviously some of this working with the comptroller in terms of the logistics of when, how and where troops arrive. >> will there be a supplemental? >> i am not going to get into -- not one that i think -- [inaudible] i think the president's been clear on where this has been on the past. >> i don't want to change topics. is the president concerned
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about the shakeup at general motors and the leadership? they are going through their second c.e.o. this is a government-backed board that fired the c.e.o. >> right. we made -- we insisted on structural changes in order for increased assistance to ensure that the company didn't go bankrupt. bankrupt -- obviously they went to a structured bankruptcy. you know what i mean. obviously, i think henderson has done a good job in a period of transition. but the board of directors runs general motors, not the president of the united states. >> were you guys given a heads up about this? >> i think at some point probably somebody knew but we were not involved in those decisions. >> and one other topic. is rogers going to testify on capitol hill tomorrow?
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has she been invited? >> first of all, i think obviously there's an ongoing assessment and investigation by the secret service into what happened, i guess, a little more than a week ago. we are working with and are ready to work with anybody that has questions on that. i think you know that based on separation of powers, staff here don't go here to testify in front of congress. she will not be testifying in front of congress tomorrow. let me add on to this. one of the -- as the secret service has reviewed their security procedures for how people get into this complex. so, too, has the white house looked at its procedures. >> [inaudible] >> we have done the assessment. hold on. you guys are impatient today. one of the things that -- i mentioned this yesterday in interviews that i did on all of your television shows was that
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we would assess whether or not all of what we were doing was being done in support of what the secret service has to do in part of their mission of keeping this complex safe. last night was the first of many holiday parties that will happen in this complex over the next several weeks. we had staff at the security checkpoint to ensure that if there was any confusion about lists those would be double checked with somebody representing the social office. that was an assessment made based on something that we believed could have been added and we've made those changes as of last night. yes. >> has there been any concerns about desiree rogers' performance prior to this instance? >> no. >> no one has questioned the president or told the president that she is very last-minute
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person, poor planner? >> you all have been to and seen either whether you are part of a pool, whether some of you have been to receptions, the remarkable work that they have done in pulling off a lot of events here. the first family is quite pleased with per performance, and i've heard nothing uttered what you talked about. >> what about the issues of her being in fashion squares earlier in the administration? it's now been raised, it's now public. you saw it in the magazines her pick tore yals, saw her on the cover. >> i get "sports illustrated" in my house. i don't get -- >> could you talk -- but could you talk -- seriously, could you talk about that? was there concerned in this white house that she came out being some might call her the bell of the ball, overshadowing
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the first lady? >> i don't know. >> it's been bantered around washington. it's in democratic circles and republican circles. >> april, that's not a station i live in in life. >> answer the question, please. >> are you done speaking so i can? >> yes. >> excellent. i have not heard any of that criticism. i have not read any of that criticism. the president, the first lady, the entire white house staff are grateful for the job that she does and think she has done a terrific and wonderful job pulling off a lot of big and important events here at the white house. >> did she invite herself to this dinner or did the president invite her -- do not fan at all. seriously. did she invite herself or did the president ask her? her name was on that list and social secretaries are the ones who put the names on the list. >> right. was she at the dinner? april, calm down. just take a deep breath for one second. see, this happens with my son.
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he does the same thing. >> don't play with me. seriously. i am being serious. >> i am giving you a serious answer. was she at the dinner? yes. was she the social secretary? i am going to get back to one of your topics like 98,000 men and women in afghanistan. >> jonathan, take us away. >> april, please forgive me if i ask this question. can you take us back to the november 11, wednesday meeting when the president came and said he wasn't happy with the options he was presented? is that when the staff began working on a more rapid, a more rapid deployment strategy and is that when the july, 2011, date starting working? >> yes. >> tell us the advent of the july, 2011, date?
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>> as a structure of this policy in general, and i don't -- i can see who has notes or go back and look at some of my notes. july, 2011 -- i'm sorry -- november 11 was a time period, was, as i characterized it, the president was dissatisfied with options that were put in front of him. but throughout this process, jonathan, the president asked for and i think everybody involved, as you can see from secretary gates' testimony today, first and foremost, a strategy and a mission was agreed upon. after you pick a strategy, you have to resource that strategy. i don't know if it's the 11th, or what have you, but throughout this process -- and,
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again, secretary -- this is what secretary gates said. this approach is not neither necessary nor feasible to create a moderate, centralized afghan-style state. the likes have not seen in that country. nor is it talking about -- one end of afghanistan to the other. the -- over the course of this -- and, again, i have to look at different inflexion points but the president on different occasions discussed not being happy with the options that he had. i don't know whether he was -- on the november 11 -- during the november 11 meeting. i do remember very clearly the president asking the planners whether or not we could get forces in there faster than
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what had previously been on force flow sheets. understanding that original assessments had force flowed for well into year two on a time continuum. so the president saw in a more narrow mission a series of resources that he believed fit that narrow mission and the time line for getting them there quicker is part of that. as i talked with jennifer and others, we with this transition point have set up a time period in which the team believes that is achievable to train that afghan national security force and begin the transition of responsibility in providing security. >> but can you give us any sense of where and when the
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july, 2011, inflegs point originated from? >> i have to look more detailed in my notes. i will say -- let me go back and see what folks have in terms of it. >> let me ask. the considerations have to do with how much -- how long the president thought americans might tolerate this surge or did -- or was it a military assessment? >> well, this is a military assessment, and i think, again, secretary gates says what we have is a time frame, a mission and a set of resources that all work to make what the president outlined achievable. >> can i try again. on july, 2011, what if that date shows up and the judgment is made that afghan forces aren't ready to assume responsibility? >> well, again, i'm not going to get deeply into hype theycals for something that is almost two years away. -- hypotheticals for something that is almost two years away.
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the president believes that we have, again, going through the history of this, an increase of at least 35,000 troops for at least two years on this july, 2009, and july, 2011 continuum, an additional 60,000-plus troops in that one-year period, he believes and the team believes that is a sufficient time in order to train afghan national security forces to assume control of providing security. now, i do want to address this because i have seen this where people have said, isn't the taliban going to wait you out? i think it's important that we dispense with what i can't -- i can't even wrap my head around being a logical argument, ok? if i understand the argument correctly, right, there is an insurgent -- insurgency that they say has -- is gaining real estate and momentum, right? so by the president saying july, 2011, what we're doing with the insurgency, according
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to what i again consider to be a highly lorgecal argument, these people are going to recede into the woods. they are going to give up their land. they are going to give up what they control. they're going to stop fighting. and they're going to go away. and if that's the case, great. that would be the best outcome. because american forces would then take that real estate. we would then have the space, even greater space to train an afghan national security force. if they want to go back july, 2011, and start this process over again, they'll meet a far larger afghan national security force to take them on. this -- the argument in and of itself is completely ill logical. it makes absolutely -- illogical. it makes absolutely no sense if you describe to the notion that an insurgency has momentum then they're controlling a certain
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amount of important real estate . again, if that's the case, then i'm here to say, disperse and we'll take what you have. it doesn't -- it doesn't -- no, no. because it's not cocky. it's the logic of -- basically, if they had 41% of this room and we said, well, we're going to be here until -- we're going to be here for another month and left, we would take that part of the room. the logic does not fit. it's a great and wonderful, illust are a tif, illogical kenard. >> that was the previous administration's timeline in iraq. >> but even if they had, do we think that the insurgency in iraq would have disappeared? do we think they would have said, you know what, what we're doing is we had this amazing
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ramp up in kinetic and violent activities, right? we've gone through all this trouble to do this, so you're telling us that we are you are going to be here until x time and then wait back until some date and do that? the illogic of it is you are given up what you have gained. yes. >> i want to clarify it. if you haven't made a decision, that's fine. it's in terms of a supplemental versus -- >> that has not -- that's a bridge not yet crossed. >> will that be crossed before february 1 budget, before the end of this year? >> i don't have any information on that. >> let me talk about the job summit tomorrow. what criteria went into the companies you selected, who you guys brought in here, aren't members of congress -- what was some of the thinking? >> what the president is looking forward to tomorrow is
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having broad discussion with and getting ideas from a whole host of people in the private sector. people that run companies like fedex, google, small business owners that the engine of our economy that do most of our hiring. financial experts, those -- others that have ideas. we -- the government alone is not going to create and doesn't have the primary responsibility the jobs that will get our economy moving again. that's our private sector. what i think the president wants to do is hear from them on the type of environment that we can have that would allow for that hiring to take place. so i think he's very much looking forward to that. obviously that will continue in allentown and throughout next week. >> following up upon that. currently the chamber of commerce and nfib are not invited. will there be a review of that?
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if that's a final decision, why not have those two at the event tomorrow? >> i don't know if fedex or google are members of the u.s. chamber of commerce, their local chamber of commerce or the nfib. i hesitate -- i think it's pretty clear to say that chambers of commerce throughout this country and small business owners throughout this country will be represented. but there's no -- i don't know why any decision would be reviewed. >> so it's not really necessary for them to be a part of submitting ideas to this process of looking for job creation? i'm just asking. >> i think -- if i'm not mistaken, they had a $20 million ad campaign to do that. i don't know that they need -- i have tv in my office. >> right. an ad campaign is different from having a conversation within the confines of this property and with the president
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on job creation. i wonder if you consider that ad campaign an act of hostility that? >> no. they have a campaign on how to create jobs. the president shares the goal of creating jobs. whether it's a small business, whether they are a member or not of the nfib, this is like a -- this someone of those washington deals. [inaudible] >> chamber's leadership, right? >> no. i hesitate to say, do you think fedex is a member of the u.s. chamber of commerce? do you think they are? >> my recollection is they are not. >> if you have something to say, say it. can we get on to something semi-pertinent? >> this is pertinent. [inaudible] >> for today let's go to semi-pertinent. >> some people superanalyzed the number of troops available
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to deploy and said 30,000 troops is tanned mount to deploying every u.s. army brigade possible. given that 10,000 are already at a stop loss, do you know where secretary gates is at softening the discharges of don't-ask, don't-tell? >> i have not heard an update on the secretary on that. i know that obviously the president wants that policy changed. in terms of -- i mean, obviously it's not just army. this is army and marines as well as -- well, army and marines. they are -- this was very specifically asked in terms of whether force flow options would interrupt either marine or army policies that have been instituted to give longer breaks for tours of duty and
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then return home. the joint chiefs to a commander all told the commander in chief that they could meet the force requirement without interrupting what they had instituted in order to provide that time at home and away from the tour of duty. >> but the troops are stretched thin. i mean -- >> no doubt. i think the president was very clear in wanting to see the joint chiefs to quite frankly ask them very directly whether that was the case. there's no doubt that there has been for many, many years a strain on our forces, that that strain has caused repeated tours and only recently has secretary gates and others instituted policies that ensured that we had time
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outside of a theater of war and that they believe was necessary to maintain an all-volunteer force, which they think is tremendous, as well as just dealing with the stress physically and mentally. scott. >> thanks, robert. what is the white house reaction to the way congressional democrats have perceived the strategy? >> well, look -- and i think -- i mean, i've seen obviously reactions from across the political spectrum within the democratic party. i think some of the concern has been expressed to the president for quite sometime. i was not in the congressional meeting yesterday. i was in the previous one, and i think a lot of this was brought up. they're concerned for what this would do to our force, what
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this would do -- what this meant budgetaryly and so forth. so i don't think there's any doubt that some of this was not unexpected. again, i think what the president wants to do both with the public and with members of congress is continue to talk to them about why he thinks the decision he made was important. >> is he confident that they could be brought around the key congressional committee leaders? >> i think he hopes he will continue to talk to them and certainly get their advice about moving forward. the president believes the decision he made was the right one and will continue to try to make sure they ubs it. cheryl. >> thanks, robert. the president was deeply involved, obviously, in creating this policy. and i'm wondering how does he envision this role going forward in the implementation. people that worked with push
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after the iraq surge was announced in january, 2007, president bush had weekly meetings with petraeus, crawford, secretary gates and others for the remainder of his term, that the implementation of the afghanistan strategy would require a similar sustained involvement by the president. and i'm wondering, what does president obama see his involvement going forward? >> i don't -- let me ask some of the folks at n.s.c. obviously there's a structure that will be set up to measure a series of benchmarks. the president receives and is in regular contact with -- obviously he sees secretary gates and admiral mullen each week at the white house. he has seen general petraeus somewhat regularly and receives both military and political updates each week from
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ambassador hill, general odierno in iraq, from ambassador iken berry and general mcchrystal in afghanistan and has been for as long as i can remember. i don't know if any -- >> video conference or -- >> sometimes they're video, but there is a weekly writen pact that goes into n.s.c. and the white house again each week. i don't know if there's anything will be doing that. suffice it to say, the president has spent a lot of time, not just in the -- over the course of the last couple of months in guysing the way forward, but -- in devising the way forward, but certainly through the end of march, was deeply involved both in a trip to iraq and continued discussions in both iraq and afghanistan. yes, ma'am. >> when you talk about training
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of the security forces, are we still talking about a national army as opposed to militias? and would nato be involved in the training efforts? and [inaudible] >> let me check on the last part, on the arab countries in terms of training. i do believe -- well, let me check in terms of the contributions from some, you know, large coalition already. the -- obviously nato has played and will continue to play an important role in training both an afghan national army and an afghan national police force both of which are part of the larger umbrella of afghan national security forces. different countries, nato have done that. and i can only imagine that you increase contributions that will come to this effort, part
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of that will be men and women dedicated specifically to training. let me check on the third part of it. yes, sir. >> robert, thank you. in terms of this humanitarian funding, i'm just curious, are you concerned about money being siphoned through corrupt individuals that are party to the afghan government that led to the taliban and how would you incentivize that will not happen? >> i think much of what i talked to jennifer in the first question, the president has been clear with president karzai, both in his recent meeting over the security of video teleconference and the phone call right after the -- he was declared the winner and the next continued president of afghanistan that corruption very directly had to be addressed. i don't want to get into the flow of any of that.
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but suffice it to say that we are making -- we are making very determined resource commitments both in manpower and in money from american service members and american taxpayers that we expect will be used for the purpose they were appropriated for, not for lining the pockets of somebody's friend. >> to follow up on something to clarify something earlier. did anyone in office here at the white house in the days leading up to the india state visit request information from the salihis in case there was space available -- >> say again. >> in the days leading up to the india state visit did anyone at the white house request the actual clearance in information for the salahis? >> let me check.
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let me -- this is what it looks like. >> i'm asking a different question. >> i think what's important is, you have to have an invitation to get in the white house. >> at the door though? >> bring your driver's license. >> if you don't have one of these you can't get into the door, april. you have a driver's license and you don't have one of these you weren't in the dinner. it's an invitation. >> robert, just to confirm. the -- my question is -- >> i have somebody check on it. >> if they were under the impression that they were invited. they could have gotten into -- >> nobody would have let anybody in under the impression that they were not invited to the dinner because there was no -- >> [inaudible] >> ildouble check. -- i will double check. >> it is actually addressed to the honorable robert gibbs. >> after she invited --
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>> did desiree rogers give the invitation inviting herself or -- >> he got himself -- >> the honorable robert gibbs. >> i am following up -- the social secretary -- >> staff member representing the social office. >> is that -- was that a decision made by the social secretary's office, in other words, or does the secret service make that call? >> it's based on an assessment and review of our procedures made by the deputy chief of staff. >> and just previously, when it was determined that it was not needed to have a social secretary representative at the gate, was that determination made by the social secretary's office or by the secret service? >> i don't know about previous decisions. i know jim looked at whether we were doing enough to compliment
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the brave men and women do at the secret service and anybody that attends an event here and decided that to ensure that we would add staff. >> but in administration's past there was a staff member there and for this dinner there wasn't. who made that call? >> i don't know. >> robert, on the jobs forum, do you expect this to lead to a bill in congress or actions of the white house taking it laterally and is there a deadline for getting something done? >> well, i think the president will continue to talk about this into next week with a speech about some of the ideas that his economic team have been looking at. and i anticipate that some of the ideas that are talked about will probably be in that speech . whether or not -- obviously there's a pretty full plate on -- with capitol hill. i don't know what the legislative calendar is for getting something done this year. i know this president -- we
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have an upcoming unemployment report. i know the president is anxious -- has asked the economic team to do whatever is possible to create the conditions for increased job hiring. i think that's what will be explored at the forum and again in allentown. >> just a quick follow-up. one outlined her proposals such as freezing any tax increases. are any of those conservative ideas that you all could agree on? >> i think if anybody's got ideas, i think folks would be happy to look at them. i'm sure people will. >> thank you. >> do you have anything? yes. >> just in light of the [inaudible] the naacp and la raza for the president to focus on jobs, are there any sessions to be focused on the unemployment rate in the minority communities? >> i think obviously that will be part of -- i believe that
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will be part of the discussion. there are going to be folks representing a lot of different groups. there will be mayors that will be here that obviously have a keen interest and awareness in this. and i anticipate that that will be something that's discussed. sam. >> hi, robert. can you detail to what extent, if any, the white house's strategy is in negotiating with the taliban leaders? >> negotiate with -- >> leaders of the taliban or insurgent leaders as a way to compel them to drop their threat? >> i would -- i would direct you to either my staff or the pentagon on the exact implementation of. i think you heard general petraeus discuss efforts in both iraq and now afghanistan and the president outlined last
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night the notion that if there are those that are willing to walk away from the type of activity they've been involved in, reintegration into society is certainly possible. >> it's only natural after walking away from the taliban? >> well, you can't be -- you can't be part of the insurgency . you either are or aren't. >> is the president -- has the president discussed upon any level any specificity of the pakistan-u.s. partnership with prime minister brown? >> let me check on that. i was -- i checked with people that were in the video conference with the prime minister on that. thanks, guys. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] >> the house is in recess subject to the call of the chair. when members return, and we're hearing that should be about
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4:15 or 4:30 eastern time, we will expect several votes including one that calls on the treasury department to monitor tarp funds. they've already passed several bills related to veterans issues today. tomorrow, work on a measure that extends the current estate tax. under current law, if congress does nothing by the end of the year that tax would disappear before returning in 2011. live coverage of the house continues on c-span when members gavel back in within a half-hour or 45 minutes. tomorrow, more hearings on president obama's afghanistan strategy. live at 9:00 a.m. eastern on our website, c-span.org, is the senate foreign relations committee. hearing from secretary of state hillary clinton, defense secretary robert gates and joint chiefs chairman admiral michael mullen. and then live at 1:00 eastern on c-span and c-span radio, the house armed services committee will hear from admiral mullen
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and secretary gates. more on afghanistan on capitol hill live tomorrow on the c-span networks. while we wait for the house to return, a portion of today's "washington journal" when we heard from montana's governor. the democratic governors association is meeting in washington today, and their chair, government -- gov. brian schweitzer, is sitting on the table. what is on the agenda? guest: we will talk about the elections, lessons learned in the last few cycles. governors are responsible for something. in washington, d.c., there is a lot of talk but very little action. but in state houses, we educate, medicate, incarcerate -- that is 87% of our budgets. we have to balance budgets every single year. we keep that people in prison, could teachers in front of students, -- bad people in prison, good teachers-of students, and it sure that the last and least half health care.
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host: with two defeats for democrats running for governor in virginia and new jersey, what lessons have you learned from those defeats that you will carry forward into to as a tad? -- in 2010? guest: you don't win them all. just because you have sex does that mean you will not have a good year next year. -- just because you have setbacks does not mean you will not have a good year next year. host: but the democrat in new jersey was favored their purred what went wrong? -- the democratic incumbent in new jersey was favored there. what went wrong? guest: he had a 12- 415-point deficit at the close to about even and it was the question of getting turnout. it is tough to get committed voters to get to the polls. host: how many elections are coming up in 2010?
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guest: many will choose the governor next year. governors in state houses, we keep the trains on time we have got to do, we balance the budget. -- we have jobs to do, we balance the budget. host: how many governors' races do you have to win in 2010 to consider the cycle of success? guest: we have big states and little states. take my little state of montana. even though new york and ohio and pennsylvania and two or three more of those little states, there are 940,000 people. compare that to california, or minnesota, we are taking back vermont, a very good chance we will win in florida. we have a competitive candidate in texas. big states have a disproportionate effect on who wins these governors races.
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host: in your discussions with democratic donors, how much is the war on afghanistan and the president's speech last night going to play? guest: once again, governors, and our national guard -- they are praying -- playing a disproportionate role in iraq and afghanistan. governors of responsibility -- have responsibility of balancing the domestic security situation with the national guard with the international security situation. we are responsible for all of the families who send their war is into war. before we send them into conflict, they will be the best trained, best armed warriors in the world. host: our guest is governor schweitzer from montana. if you want to get involved in the conversation, the numbers are on the screen. our first call is from atlanta,
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georgia, david on-line for independencts. caller: my question for the governor is -- i am concerned or interested in how the democrats are feeling upcoming elections -- viewing upcoming elections, and the priorities for the following years. it seems that president obama has been such a change as far as democrats coca. -- democrats go. and giving a new face to it. host: there is a gubernatorial election next year in georgia. where are you leaning right now? guest: i recently moved -- caller: i recently moved to the state so i have not had time to catch up on what is going on but i really cannot answer that at the moment. guest: i will help you out there. there is a former governor of georgia, an extraordinary
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governor last time, and we think he has a good chance to win this time. we also have an attorney general that is looking at the race. we have other candidates. georgia is in play. thanks for calling in. when we talk about governors, we are talking about chief executives. people are looking for somebody who they trust with the ball come some day they trust with the bank accounts -- trust with the ball, somebody to trust with bank accounts. sometimes they choose republicans, sometimes they choose democrats. but it is not about partisanship when you are in the governor's seat. it is the responsibility for the budget. 87% of the budget is to educate, medicate, incarcerate, and that is not partisanship. host: randy on the plan from republicans from citrus heights, california. tell us about the governor's race there. caller: it is not keeping up
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yet. i'm leaning towards met with them -- meg whitman, the former ebay ceo. curley feria is also an interesting candidate. -- carly fiorina is also a niche as the candidate. it was a article recently -- listen to this -- over 10,000 former government employees drawing pensions at $100,000 or more. that is just absurd. at this time, when we had this huge unfunded mandates, our budget is not balanced by any measure of the imagination. they want to constantly raise our taxes because they have to pay off the union members. the people in washington are not any better. we have all this debt occurred
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and they are talking about extending benefits more with this new health care thing. it is just a disconnect, you know good people at this time are cutting back on their expenses, cutting back on spending, and the people in government are just insane. host: we will leave it there. guest: let me just say this -- california is an ungovernable place. in d.c. they are talking about a surge, and in california they are always talking about a splurge. the way we have money in the bank is that we did not have a recession -- during the good years, we had a governor who said it now. there is an infinite amount of good ideas at all cost money. there is a finite amount of money. i found ways of saying no
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nicely. you do not have that in california. whether it is a republican governor now or democrats in the past, you have a ballot system where people go and vote themselves money and a referendum and they raise taxes to pay for it but that does not work. don't walk, run. the california and come on up to montana. you will be welcome. -- leave california and come on up to montana. he will be welcome. every single day i wake up in the morning, i think, where can i find more savings? what else can i cut it? what programs can i deliver for less money? every single week, i have more announcements. remember, there are only two states in the black and we are one of them. i am still saving money.
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the reason we have the money in the bank is that we know that when the hard times came, it would be reduced revenues. we wanted to make sure there is enough money in the bank to carry through without raising taxes or cutting programs. host: mississippi, betty on our line for democrats. hey, betty, turn down your radio. caller: okay, i cut it off. why are we at getting a raise in the next two years? i am on a low income and i have to get help of a month. guest: the compensation that governments make it to individuals for the pension or retirement or if you are on medicaid or whatever it happens to be is based on inflation. we have not an inflationary economy right now.
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i will not say deflation, because that is dangerous word. but the price of electricity does that seem to be going up, even the price of cars -- does not seem to be going up, even the price of cars is not. we don't believe we ought to be increasing. oftentimes it is targeted and based on the overall inflation rate. host: our next call is from joe on long island, new york, on the line from independents. you have a governor's race in 2010. caller: thank you for c-span. yes, we do have a governor's race. gov. paterson is having a real problem. my question to the governor is -- i am independent, and when the first comments you made -- one of the first comments you made this how many democrats they were and how many republicans their workers when
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are you going to get politicians who just care about the people to stop going into the democratic caucus or the republican governors association? why can you guys sit down at -- what can you guys not sit down and get something done for the american people? that is a big disappointment from president obama. he promised that things would be different, and the partisanship has just increased. i would be . . office i have been elected to print in montana, -- elected to. in montana, at the governor and lieutenant governor run as a team, like the president and vice-president. the day i announced i was choosing a republican state senator to be my lieutenant governor for me, a democrat, we broke the first ticket in america to do that, the only
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ticket in america that did it, and we have done successfully in montana, and maybe it is a template for what they ought to be using in washington, d.c. host: you mentioned having a bipartisan ticket. you are the first democratic governor to serve in montana for 20 years. you think having a republican on your ticket as lieutenant governor help you out? guest: voters probably recognize that this is going to be a different kind of governor, this is going to be pragmatic governor. we have increased energy production at the fastest rate in the history of montana critical, oil, wind, natural-gas -- coal, oil, wind, natural gas. we have cut energy consumption. we have decreased energy consumption. we have invested in education. we have decrease the number of people we have in our correction system cou. according to a recent report,
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because of changes we are making in treating these offenders, montana is decreasing the prison population at the fastest rate in the country. instead of just locking people up, we are treating mental illnesses. instead of just incarcerating people, we are treating drug and alcohol addiction. it costs us less money, and they are more likely to be reformed living close to their own home. host: kansas, a bill on the line for republicans. caller: good morning, governor schweitzer, how are you? guest: i'm doing fine. caller: i heard one of the things you said a little while ago about what the roles of the government is to keep the legislature and a check. -- one of the roles of government is to keep the legislature in check. to me, it begs the question of who keeps the governor in check? i assume it is people i don't know. i sort of a light-hearted way,
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and kansas, we have a significant budget deficit in the order of hundreds of millions now. we also have a government in conservative kansas that is probably the top two or three in the number of state employees per capita. in other words, we have this huge government structure that is, of course, custom lots of money. -- costing lots of money. we need school funding to the governor says that we need to cut school funding and you imagine what happens next and you get this huge cry and we need money for this and that. what advice for the governor and legislature of kansas as somebody who is outside the situation? guest: you have a republican legislature in kansas for a generation. they are responsible for the budget. the governor does not pass the budget the legislature does.
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the governor can veto the budget, but that is all they've got. i believe you have numbers that the legislature could override almost any veto the governor could make. you have a republican legislature for a generation, and the budget deficit, a disproportionately large number of state employees -- i guess that is what your concern was. it tells everybody in america that the parties reach a particular word, what is this time for delivering, that is what the delicate -- but when it is time for delivering, that is what they deliver. we have republicans who are big spenders, democrats who are big spenders. we have republicans who was not been accountable, democrats who have not been accountable. people who elect their leaders simply because of what party they are making a big mistake. you ought to take a look at votes and sometimes the democrats have got it right, sometimes republicans have got it right. we need to find a way of working together when we have good ideas. host: will the democratic
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governors association meet with the president? how many of them are looking for support from the white house to get elected or reelected? guest: for the most part, gov. services are not like congressional races. they run other -- governor's races are not like congressional races. they run on their own dynamic. for the most part, bringing some from the outside it does not work. i do not think it works in kansas or california or minnesota. it might help you with some local fundraising, but for the most part, i am of the opinion that bringing people in from the outside does not help you win elections. >> even where the president won in the last election? it does not sway people at all to see their candidate with the president on air force one? guest: i believe it was joe earlier on the independent line who had absolutely right. the numbers of republicans in america have collapsed at a
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historic numbers. it may be the lowest registration or self-identified in at least 50 years. and democrats are down. the surge, if you want it, is an independents, and they will decide elections and they are not looking for partisan people. they are looking for solutions. host: gov. brian schweitzer, democrat of montana, rocking the surge. next caller. caller: how you doing, governor? i really like what i'm hearing from you. my question to you is what, as a governor, with your platform that i hear, can you do to keep the surge coming back to the democratic party? i myself have been a democrat all my life, but the bipartisan shipping -- bipartisanship thing has turned my stomach.
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i am thinking of being an independent, because i think the vast majority of people outside of the democratic party help to get barack obama to the president's -- to be president. what can you and what will you all do to keep the surge coming and overcome what has been the last eight years of the record of the previous administration and bring forth positive things that can happen under our administration now? guest: let me jump in there. there is kind of a splurge of the search this morning -- of the surge this morning. don't give up on the democrats. there appear to be big fights in washington, d.c., but you elected barack obama to deliver on key issues. when you collected barack obama, he said to you that we are going to reform health care in this country. you don't want him to roll over.
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you want him to stand and fight and be counted, and that is what he is doing right now. when you elect barack obama, you chose somebody would take america in any direction and increase the rest of the world and find friends -- in a new direction and increase relations with the rest of the world and find friends were recanted -- where we can. i think republicans want the president to be successful, because he is successful, that all america is. host: next up, david on the line for independence. caller: this is a fairly new city. we have almost a quarter million people here. to your thing on inflation, i feel like inflation is alive and well, even though the government does not count some of the costs. pierre prices were raised last summer because of the expenses
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with transportation and transportation companies have not the word the prices, so few prices of gunned down. -- have not lowered the prices, if you prices going down -- fuel prices going down. we are paying more for smaller food packages. host: before you go, tell us a little bit about the governor's race in florida. caller: i have not been paying that much attention right now. guest: dave, i got a little suggestion -- there is a gal who is your state treasurer right now and she will be very good governor and i am supporting her. i'm a rancher, a farmer, and the beach prices are down last year -- beet prices are down from
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last year. the stuff that makes your beer -- it has dropped from $20 to about $8. core inflation in food is gone. farmers are not getting any more money. if some of the marketers and processors are buying their raw product for less money and charging more money toward the end product, -- for the city to product, we need to get after them. that seems to be on -- for the end product. we need to get after them. that seems to be unfair. host: is it part of the plan for democratic governors of the democratic candidate to talk about reaching beyond u.s. borders to try to establish relationships with other countries that can help boost the economies of the various states they are running? guest: we need to build relationships right out of graduate school, i went to saudi arabia, involved in building the
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world's largest dairy farm. i stayed there and develop projects, irrigation projects, from the iraqi border to the yemen border and i learned to speak a little arabic along the way. but you don't make friends by blowing them up. i think we need a strong military. i think america should never be in a position where we don't have the strongest military in the world. we should be the super power. when politicians said that military to war, they need to first define what it is that we hope to accomplish. we tell the generals, "this but we want you to do, and we want you to design the war to win." if we sent people to military places and we don't know what a win looks like -- eight years ago we went to get osama bin laden. now, god knows if osama bin
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laden is even a life. talking about putting more people in separate there is n -- talking about putting people in afghanistan. we ought to have hillary clinton go to the capital of india and say to them, "look, you have been at war with pakistan for decades, you have nukes point at each other, you have over 100 dozen trips to the kashmir border -- 100,000 troops at the cashmore border could you pull your troops back, pakistan can move their troops over there and fight the taliban." host: tucson, arizona, dick on the line for republicans. caller: i admire you immensely because you are the first politician i've heard in a long time that made any sense. guest: that is because i broke a few coldspring when you are pricking a colt -- i broke a few colts.
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when you cannot get that call to pay attention, you tie its legs up and now it is standing on three legs and a little button push him around. -- a little guy can push him around. caller: before you had elected office, i do -- before you became governor, had you ever held elected office before? guest: no. caller: you talk about your work on a dairy farms. there is currently any product -- a new product -- not new -- called bovine colostrum. i came back from a 23rd trip to
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africa, and it fixes a. it restores the immune system. -- fixes aids, it restores the immune system. it will help people get well and it will reduce the medicinal cost. host: who are you supporting in the arizona gubernatorial race? caller: we have not got it put together yet. i am returning from republicanism to independent. whether we have an independent candidate, i don't know. guest: 1 at cal first calves, the first milk -- when a cow first task, the first milk that comes out of -- if it does not occur immediately, the will die of deficiency. you have to milk the colostrum out, and pour the colostrum in. if you do not come out that half will die three or four days
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later -- if you do not, that calf will buy three or four days later of deficiency. if we have a week have, all we have to do is -- weak calf, all we have to do is get the colostrum out. it is a powerful immune deficiency combater so it is not surprising that works on aids. host: politics and an animal husbandry, only on washington journal. hogwish. guest: come on, there is no place called hogwish. caller: i am from illinois to i want you to give suggestions to the incoming governor of illinois to it and i belong to regional post, schweitzer post,
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will the war hero. i want to know if you are any relations. i will get off the line. god bless c-span and all the workers at c-span and everybody in america have a happy holiday season. guest: my grandparents actually came from ukraine in 19009 -- 1909. i am actually a german russian, living in ukraine for years, and around 1900 x? be take tpwhench week. the first electronic vote will be conducted as a 15-minute be conducted as a 15-minute vote. remaining electronic votes will be conducts as a five-minute
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vote. the unfinished business is the vote on the motion of the gentleman from tennessee, mr. gordon to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 515 as amended, on which the yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar number 200, a bill to prohibit the importation of certain low-level radioactive waste into the united states. the speaker pro tempore: the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill as amended? members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a 15-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote, the yeas are 309. the na are 112. 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed and without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. . the speaker pro tempore: agree to house concurrent resolution 197 on which the yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the concurrent resolution. the clerk: house concurrent resolution 197, encouraging banks and mortgage services to work with families affected by contaminated drywall to allow temporary for bearance on their
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home mortgages. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and agree to the concurrent resolution as amended. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote --
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote, the yeas are 419, the nays are 1. 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended and and the concurrent resolution is agreed to and without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. without objection, the title is amended. the unfinished business is the vote on the motion of the the gentleman from new york, mrs. maloney to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 1242 as amended on which the yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 1242, a bill to amend the emergency economic stablization act of 2008 to provide for additional
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monitoring and accountability of the troubled assets relief program. the speaker pro tempore: the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill as amended. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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